Archives For July 2012

Tonight. 7:00PM doors, tunes at 8:00. Nashville’s Church Mice, aka Clayton Fike, kicks things off first. We’ve been wanting to have Clayton play ever since we met the guy several months ago at another house show, and we’re glad to have him on board for house show #18. If you don’t already know Clayton from Church Mice, you may know him as one of the newest members of Foreign Fields, who we had play one of our biggest house shows back in May. (Public Service Announcement: Foreign Fields are playing as part of Communion Nashville’s August showcase this Thursday night at the Basement and the lineup is SICK! Big Surr, Jessie Baylin, Jill Andrews and Gold Motel also join. Things are gonna get rrreeeeaaallll.)

And for our headliner we have Minneapolis natives Caroline Smith and Jesse Schuster from Caroline Smith & The Good Night Sleeps. As a four-piece band they have toured all over the country, both headlining shows and opening for hugely successful acts like Cloud Cult and Trampled By Turtles. They’re making their first Nashville appearance as a duo as part of a two-week-long-plus living room tour. Cause A Scene is so proud to have them as part of our house concert series. Caroline’s music is full of pop hooks that stick in your mind and Midwestern folk sensibilities that make up songs that feel almost instantly recognizable. Most notable is her one-of-a-kind voice, that is equal parts Billie Holliday, Feist and Joanna Newsom. We think you’ll come away completely enamored. We sure are!

If you’re planning on coming to the show, give us a shout at shows@causeascenemusic.com or reserve tickets via Eventbrite here. If we’re lucky, perhaps Caroline and Jesse will break out this wonderful cover of Beyonce’s “Why Don’t You Love Me.”

Or if covers aren’t your thing, how about an original. Here’s “Rocking Chair”, beautifully filmed by North Shore Sessions:

Two nights from now, on Saturday, July 28, Cause A Scene welcomes Darlingside to Nashville, for their first ever performance in Music City. The show kicks off around 8:00 and we have 2 wonderful Nashville bands opening: Peter Terry & The City Profits, who were recently named The Deli Magazine’s Band of the Month, and Matty & the Lovebones. Tickets are available in advance for $5 at the Eventbrite link below and for $10 at the door. Hope to see you there!

Darlingside is a Northampton, MA-based “string-rock” quintet that is exploding onto stages across the Northeast. Together only a year, they have already played to packed houses from Portland to D.C., headlining such prestigious venues as The Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, Brooklyn Bowl in NYC, and the Paramount Theatre in Rutland, VT. Lush five-part vocal harmonies, classical cello-violin duets, and compelling break-beats characterize the band’s sound. Darlingside keeps audiences on their toes with exuberant stage presence, spontaneous a cappella, frequent instrument switches, mind-boggling covers, and a widely eclectic, cross-genre blend of original material. Darlingside’s unquestionable originality is borne of an unlikely hodgepodge of musical backgrounds: Harris began playing classical cello when he was six, and appeared twice on NPR with his classical piano trio. Auyon earned a travel fellowship after college to study and write about the traditional music of Brazil, Turkey, and Ireland. Don toured nationally as a boy alto, picked up the guitar in high school, and honed his singer/songwriter talents playing for sunset boat cruises in Maine. Dave began singing and arranging vocal music in college, where he became musical director of his a cappella group, then spent two years learning guitar as a street musician in Boston and abroad. Sam got started on drums at the age of seven, and his intricate style fuses jazz, funk, hip-hop, and rock. Together, the five close friends are “a powerhouse of vocal, instrumental, songwriting, and performing talent,” with “a surprisingly rich voice that belies their relative youth.”

Peter Terry and the City Profits, a folk/rock outfit that blends the soulful, thoughtful lyrics of front man Peter Terry, the sultry sounds of the cello. Originally formed in Chicago, the band now calls Nashville home, where they have been refining their unique sound. Their debut album, I Am Jackson, was released on 11-1-11 on iTunes and Amazon. Individually honing their crafts at various midwestern universities, their exceptional musicianship and creativity allows the City Profits to transform Terry’s songwriting into interesting compositions spanning several music genres including rock, folk, singer-songwriter, jazz, and the blues.

Matty & The Lovebones are a Rock/Pop/Americana band based out of Nashville, TN. “Think if Ryan Adams, John Mayer Trio, and the Black Crowes had a musical love child..that’s us.”

After forgetting our Grimey’s purchased tickets at home, Cause a Scene made it to the Cannery Ballroom, pumped for our first Tallest Man on Earth experience, in time to catch the last two songs of openers Strand of Oaks. Strand of Oaks presented themselves as a rocking duo with heavy drum rhythms, consistent guitar riffs, and the potential for an energetic set of creative and original songs. We were disappointed to have seen such a small sampling of their music, so we’ll keep an eye out for their next Nashville appearance, but we couldn’t wait for Kristian Matsson to take the stage.As you probably already know, Kristian is not the world’s record holder for vertical growth – he’s not even close to the tallest in the room (no, the tallest in the room managed to find his spot directly in front of us) – but without a full band and no light show or smoke to enhance the stage, it’s not the visual performance that brings one to a Tallest Man on Earth show, it’s the opportunity to see a man and his guitar as a single entity, a simple pairing that rarely fills the Mercy Lounge, let alone the packed Cannery Ballroom on a Monday night.

From the time he opened with To Just Grow Away until he closed his encore with The Dreamer, Kristian kept the crowd focused on every single note. With his quiet demeanor, his light banter with the crowd between songs led the bustling crowd to a near roaring wave of conversation, but no soul in the room dared to speak over the Dylan-esque voice of our Swedish friend. The attention of the crowd wasn’t lost on Matsson, as he graciously stepped aside as the crowd repeated the final lines, “in your eyes, babe” from the chorus of The Gardener.

While Kristian’s show was certainly minimalistic – he only briefly altered the visual experience by sitting at his baby grand for two of the fifteen songs – the soothing, rhythmic sounds of man and guitar and his enchanting lyrics could transport the blind from the running of the bulls in Pamplona to dealing with the loss of a loved one amongst the roses and jasmine.

Matsson would again graciously accept the admiration of the crowd with deep bows at the edge of the stage more likely found after a show at TPAC than at Cannery as he left for the night, but it was Cause a Scene and a thousand of our friends that couldn’t have been more appreciative.

No video from the concert, so here’s one of our favorites, King of Spain, on Later with Jools Holland from last year:

(A big welcome back to Molly Williams who has been busy helping out with a lot of things behind the scene for Cause A Scene. Today we bring you a band that Molly (and the rest of us, quite frankly) simply cannot get enough of, Milo Greene.)

Daydreaming outside surrounded by summer breezes. Cool night drives with the windows down. Rainy Saturday mornings curled up on the couch. All of the above are acceptable and ideal scenarios for listening to Milo Greene’s self-titled debut full-length album. I have been anxiously awaiting the release of this album since the first time I saw this video – a true representation of the band’s ability to effortlessly create a concept that’s unmatched right now.

The original three college classmates evolved into a LA-based quintet that will catch you off guard with their unmatched sound – backed by just enough throaty sound and instrumental depth to pack plenty of emotion. I can’t help but hear a touch of Local Natives’ distant yet euphoric harmonies accompanied by clattering drums and reverbed guitars along with hints of Fleet Foxes’ ability to transport you away from the everyday and into a pastoral dreamland with honest poetic lyrics sung by lush and natural voices. Add in a dose of Of Monsters and Men’s propelling, catchy lyricism and you have the making of a band that is sure to be adopted by the masses looking for a perfect summer soundtrack.

This album has been on repeat in my car, house, office, and headphones since it was released last Tuesday and there’s still no sign of boredom. Each track offers something unique, whether it’s a track like Son My Son with the perfect pitch of Marlana Sheetz’s smooth vocals or one of the various instrumental tracks that offer seamless transitions like Polaroid.

The harmonies Milo Greene create are hypnotic and seem perfectly described by the Autumn Tree lyric “now I’m off to dream” as the distant melancholic voices build, surrounded by innovative drum work and acoustic guitars. Perfectly Aligned perfectly features Milo Greene’s wind-swept sound that builds to a drum-led anthem. The development of sound from track to track can carry you through a range of emotions like few albums can. It’s neither happy nor sad – it’s a perfect in-between to match any day.

I have finally found my solution to the rut of same-old-same daily soundtracks and have found an intriguing album that will take me from summer to fall to winter to spring on light-hearted harmonies and rich sounds that can be paired with any day, mood, or season.  Milo Greene is on to something and I’m anxious to see where their talent takes them. Tonight’s appearance on The Late Show with Dave Letterman certainly shouldn’t hurt their chances of breaking out in a major way.

Must listens: What’s the Matter & Autumn Tree

As we are running short on time this week, we have an abbreviated post to announce what we believe is going to be one of the most fun house shows we have had the chance to put on in quite some time. Memphis buzz-band Star & Micey headline with local favorites Carolina Story making a return appearance to the Cause A Scene house show stage. This Friday night, July 20th, we’ll open up our doors at 7:30 for our 16th house show of the year. Tickets are $7 with an advance RSVP, which you can take care of by emailing shows@causeascenemusic.com or by registered on our Eventbrite page here. Tickets will also be available at the door for $10. (Note: At this time, we only accept cash, so please plan accordingly.)

We’ve run into some parking issues the last couple shows we’ve had, so in the spirit of not attracting the cops for a third time (our neighbors really are the bee’s knees), please park across the street at the church. It’s a short twenty second walk from their parking lot to our driveway. And now without further adieu, I present you with the words of several folks we hold in high regard who have already caught on to one of Tennessee’s next great bands:

“Star & Micey breezed into our New Faces Nite at The Basement and schooled every other act on the bill. Did the Avett Bros set up camp in Memphis? Upbeat and alive. They made me smile big time.” – Mike “Grimey” Grimes, The Basement

“In their four-year career as a band, Star & Micey have crafted then steadily smoothed out out a brand of folksy pop that brings to mind Memphis legends Big Star and The Avett Brothers. Every live show I’ve seen of theirs (upwards of 20 at this point) feels like an all-out energy sacrifice, complete with backflips, crowd-mingling and full-throttle “bah-dah-bah”-ing.” – Paste Magazine

“Star & Micey make winsome, feel-good, old-timey-tinged pop tunes that owe as much to sea shanty-spouting indie acts like the Decmeberists as they do straight-up bluegrass bands like Freakwater and Nickel Creek.” – AllMusic Guide

(Good gosh the harmonies on this last one are about as perfect as harmonies can get.)